A new trend has found its way into plastic surgery clinics over the past few years: prospective patients who want to look like their favorite celebrity in one way or another. Whether it’s a request for a nose like Nicole Kidman’s or a hairline like Kim Kardashian, celebrity based requests are numerous in the average plastic surgery clinic. What drives patients to seek plastic surgery procedures to mimic celebrity features? And is this behavior really healthy? Would you ask for your favorite celebrity look?
Mimicry Is the Highest Form of Flattery
In the United States, celebrities are the royalty of pop culture, showing up at important events and embracing all the latest trends. They grace the pages of every magazine, appear on the small and big screens, publish books, design their own clothing, launch new lines of perfume, and even perform great acts of community service. In our culture, it’s nearly impossible not to come in contact with our glorified celebrities during everyday life. For many people, celebrities become idols, the pinnacle of who they want to become in every way possible.
When prospective patients walk into a consultation with the clear goal of resembling a celebrity, this is the ultimate way to capture a piece of that person in themselves. As the saying goes, “mimicry is the highest form of flattery,” and there is no better way to show your admiration of a celebrity than to alter yourself in their likeness.
Celebrities Are Also Beauty Guides
For other patients, it’s not always idolatry that drives their request for Angelina Jolie’s lips. On the contrary, requesting a specific celebrity feature can be the only way they can communicate their desires with their plastic surgeon. When a patient can be specific about the desired income in this way, she can be sure that her doctor will understand her. It sends a clear image, even if it might not be practical for her. The problem with asking for someone else’s features on your face is simple: the piece from one puzzle won’t fit easily into another. A celebrity nose might not complement the rest of your features, so while it’s great in theory, it might not deliver the results you imagine. At the very least, using celebrity features as a starting point can steer your rhinoplasty consultation in the right direction, ending with a compromise that includes the features you want with the structures that exist.
Copy-Cat Procedures: Healthy or Not?
Celebrity-focused plastic surgery requests are not a black and white issue. In some cases, they are perfectly reasonable. In others, they can be a sign of an unhealthy self-image and perhaps larger problems. Patients who seek a specific surgery focused on one or two areas aren’t necessarily trying to change everything about themselves. They might have looked in a magazine and thought how nice one celebrity’s chin might look on her face. As discussed, this can actually be a great place to start a discussion with your plastic surgeon, ensuring you both hold the same mental image as you plan for your surgery.
On the other hand, large-scale overhauls in the image of a favorite celebrity could be an indication that troubling issues are at play. The idea of trading one’s image and identity to become another person can result from depression, personality disorder, serious image problems, and body dysmorphic disorder. If the latter is to blame, the patient may opt for surgery after surgery, never pleased with the final results. In reality, plastic surgery cannot make one person exactly identical to another; although many features can be changed to be near copies, exact duplication isn’t possible with a person’s different bone structures. Ideal candidates for any plastic surgery should have realistic expectations for their surgical results.
Discuss Your Desired Results with a Plastic Surgeon
For the best results, consult with a credentialed and experienced plastic surgeon about the look you’d like to achieve from your surgery. Dr. Sheldon S. Kabaker is an Aesthetic Facial Plastic Surgeon and Hair Transplant Specialist who also offers nonsurgical skincare treatments at his practice. He received his medical degree from the University of Illinois College of Medicine in 1964, before serving in the US Army Medical Corps and seeing active duty in Vietnam. Dr. Kabaker has studied and taught facial plastic surgery internationally in countries including France, Spain, Italy, Germany, Israel, Mexico, Argentina, the United Kingdom, and Australia. Today, he continues to educate himself while delivering satisfactory results to his patients. To book a consultation with Dr. Kabaker, contact his office located at 3324 Webster Street in Oakland, California by calling (415) 379-9015.